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The hard drive is simply plugged into the "motherboard" of the PVR....just as it would be on a computer - the IDE cable and the power supply cable.

I have a removeable drive bay in my computer - I just slip the PVR drive into the bay caddy, pop that in the drive bay, boot the computer, and then run PVRexplorer. Too easy!!!:cool:

The only thing to be aware of is that the PVR drive is jumpered as a "master", so if you put that on the same IDE cable as another drive in your computer, you'll probably have to jumper it as a "slave" (actually, you can jumper the either drive as slave - I have my DVD burner permanently as the slave on IDE-1, so that I don't have to do anything when I pop in the PVR drive.)

Hope that helps.
Mike
 

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BEV/Dish to DVD: software

BEV/Dish to DVD:

Hugh started the thread off right.
The first post above points to the Yahoo group, DishRip
However, the program to get from there is called: PVRexplorer, ver 1068
...unless a newer ver has been released.
Please disregard any references to any other (older) programs.
They are horrible, and really should not be tried since they have been replaced!

Unfortunately, finding answers on the DishRip or DishMod sites is a real pain.
That forum format is less useful than a newsgroup.

Most DVD players in the last several years will play the formats that BEV/Dish transmit
(see my comments above)
If yours won't , buy a new DVD player!
Else, you'd have to spend the extra time re-encoding to full DVD specs,
and for that, I use WinAVI, about a $30 program.
To put it simply, find a way to NOT re-encode, and you should be happier.
I only do it to very special projects, such as if I get a 640x480 show,
or if I want to convert DivX shows I've gotten off the internet.

Editing for commercial removal is done with VideoReDo.
That is about a $50 program, but they have a full-function evaluation copy you can try for several weeks.
They also have a nice forum where the developers and friendly users help people with questions.

Up to this point, I'll suffer no fools who want to ask, "but can I use THIS program instead?"
Use the tools listed. They get the job done.

The next step is "authoring" the DVD.
That process includes re-muxing (not re-encoding) the sound and picture,
making all sorts of index files to support chapters, menus, etc.
I use DVD Labs, ver 1.3 for that, and you'll find a lot of discussion by folks who are fine with many other authoring programs.
You can look to the VideoReDo forum,
or to http://www.doom9.net/
or possibly on http://www.videohelp.com/

Learning what you can/should do in the authoring step is another learning experience.
But, once you become familiar with what looks like an over-complicated program,
and decide which three things you -need- to do to make what you want,
it's really not so bad.

At the end, I burn with Nero 6.6 (but 6.0 or 5-something will work)
I'm trying to not repeat myself, so do read my other posts in this thread, above, for more clarification.

Hardware comments will be in the next post, in a few mintutes.
 

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BEV/Dish to DVD: hardware

BEV/Dish to DVD: hardware

Now for the hardware questions:

Getting to the drive -
Turn off power with the front panel or remote and wait one minute (listen to the unit)
Now, pull out the smart card, and wait one minute (listen to the sounds)
At this point, you can pull the mains power, then wait another minute for the drive to spin down.

The 5100 is opened by removing two black screws from the top rear of the unit.
The cover slides off rearward.
Orient the unit with the black face toward you on a table, and the power cord away from you, rightside up.
The hard drive is mounted to the right, on a bracket of its own.
That bracket is held with three silver screws.
The one to the rear of the unit, and the one to the (right) side can be removed easily.
The third is under the black front bezel.

Double check that the unit is unplugged from the mains, and slap yourself if not!
Carefully lift up the left plastic tab where the front panel locks to the front metal chassis, and pull that edge of the bezel away from the unit about 1/4".
Do the same for the plastic tab on the right top, beside the hard drive.
At this point, the third silver screw may be exposed, but hold on.

Consider the silver security sticker on the drive bracket.
Deside if you want to violate it. You will not succeed in removing the sticker intact.

To make access to the third screw easier, use a pencil or other thin object, and reach the bottom front bezel latch beside the hard drive, and disengage it.
This allows the (right) drive side of the front bezel to come forward about half an inch.
Remove the third screw.
Lift out the bracket holding the drive.


What you'll find that a lot of people do (and it works) is to turn off their computer,
attach the PVR drive to it, restart, and run the PVRexplorer program.
Well, if you don't know your way around a PC, this is a bad idea!
The PVR hard drive is jumpered for Master, and some folks change that to Slave before connecting to their PC.
It's better to connect the PVR drive to your secondary IDE port, and make sure it doesn't conflict with any CD/DVD drives, but that goes beyond the scope of this discussion.
If you are not comfortable at this point, do not proceed.

You'll see (at DishMod) where some like to mount a drive slide-bay onto or on top of their PVR, so they can remove the drive easily.
If you choose that path, make sure you unplug AC to the PVR before removing the drive tray, and make sure you unplug the computer before mounting the slide tray.
And I mean each time you transfer the drive between the PVR and computer, and back again!
I know those products claim hot-plugability, but after careful evaluation, I WON'T DO IT !
Hope that was clear enough. ;)

Another popular approach, is to mount the bare PVR drive (or perhaps on a slide tray) into an external Firewire or USB 2 enclosure.
You can then hot-plug that into your computer.
Windows will automatically recognize a new drive, and attach it.
Since there is no Windows formatting on the drive, you cannot browse it.
Start up PVRexplorer, and it will find your new PVR drive.

I use a variation on the USB 2 connection method.
With a fast computer, you should be able to extract and remux to .MPG, a 1-hour show in 4 minutes.
That falls to three minutes, if you have dual, fast hard drives.

Hope this info has been helpful.


edit: see comments above, by Nuje, for more good info.
 

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If you want to get really fancy, I've seen/heard of peeps who have taken a dremel tool to the side of the 5100 and cut a hole in there and mounted a drive bay there as well. When it's time to dump programs off the drive, simply unplug the 5100, turn the key on the drive bay, pull out the caddy (with drive in it), slide it into drive bay on PC, and presto-whammo! Ready to rip!
Of course, I believe this may indeed void the warranty on the pvr ;)
 

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nice install

Yea, here are pictures of the very well done work:
http://www.sonicperfection.com/501album/

I considered this approach, and did buy a number of top-quality drive slide bays.
The cheap , crummy, all-plastic ones are a joke.
I got some with major components made of aluminum.
In the end, this approach was junked due to unacceptable technical problems.
(and better ideas ;) )
 

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The "cheap, crummy plastic ones" that I have are all working fine - had zero problems with them....glad I found what works for me for just $6US each. :D
 

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Thank-you for all the great information Anole and Nuje... I will definitely be trying this out in the next 0-3 weeks when I can find some time to open things up and purchase some of the hardware you note to make things easier. I have tons of stuff on my PVR that I want to dump to my PC but can't. Will let you know how I make out.... (famous last words)
 

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another way

Technically, this is off-topic, but here is another good way to save your shows to DVD, and with a lot less trouble...

Another Way:
A buddy of mine works long hours and drives two hours each day.
He's technically capable of executing the above proceedures.
He has, at best, two hours awake at home per day.
His wife is clever and technically saavy, but she works, and has other hobbies.

About this time last year, the extraction/edit/author/burn proceedure outlined above was not reliable, and WAY more complicated.
If you think it sounds hard now, ... well... ;)

He had been looking at the stand-alone DVD recorders for the living room.
He'd put off buying one, waiting for them to come down in price, and add an optical sound input.
I think they'd just come down from around $600/$400 to the $250 range.
I found him one for $150, which didn't have the optical in, and suggested he limp along with that 'till better units came out.

For the last year, it's been hooked up to his PVR via the Svideo cable, and his wife has taken it over.
She even transfers -his- shows to DVD, manually pausing to cut out the commercials.
She's a sweetie. ;)

She records movies in the 2-hour mode, which seems great.
She records his/her regular TV shows in the 4-hour mode, and personally, I find it less than wonderful.
With the price of DVD media so cheap (shop around if you don't think so), one or two shows per disc is fine.

Optional Thoughts:
One other option some people discuss on the VideoReDo forum (that's the video editor), is to take discs from your home DVD recorder, pull the data into your computer, edit, re-author, and burn new DVDs.


Just various options to consider.
You know what camp I'm in.
/
 

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Well I just wanted to say thanks guys for all of your pointers. This past weekend I was able to open up my 5100 and take out the hard drive. Purchased a USB docking station for the 3.5" drive, downloaded PVRExplorer, and was off to the races.

Dumped the Bomber-Rider CFL game to my system and 6.1 gigs later all was transferred. Still sniffing around out there for cheaper editing / rendering solutions. I've found that ReJig is a nice free little app that allows for compression of video and/or DVD authoring... and it's free.

http://www.afterdawn.com/software/video_software/video_tools/rejig.cfm
 

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Anole said:
I only do it to very special projects, such as if I get a 640x480 show, or if I want to convert DivX shows I've gotten off the internet.
Anole... perhaps getting a hair off topic but can I ask you (and other users) what you use to convert your mpeg files to DivX. I've tried a couple like Dr. DivX but they come out looking so bad. Is this normal? I've seen much clearer DivX files. Here's an example usng Dr. DivX...

DivX



DVD



Is this normal that the DivX looks so bad? Thanks!
 

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pvr --> divx ?

No, I up-convert from other people's DivX, to real DVD format.
That way, anyone can watch the converted shows in their living room instead of needing to use their computer.

One reason your stuff looks so bad, is...
1) high compression
2) see #1

An hour off your PVR is about 1gb (give or take a little).
After editing a 1 hour show to remove commercials, it's under 800mb.
After converting to DivX, what is often distributed on the internet is 355mb.

So, the question is, how much did you compress your files?
Yes, they look pretty ugly.
But, single frames will look far worse than the same show in motion.

When I up-convert using WinAVI, I didn't choose any of the good/better/best conversion options, because the DivX file going in to the process wasn't that good.
All I got was larger output files with no change in quality.
GIGO... Garbage In, Garbage Out

Try turning down your compression ratio to not make the output file so small and see how you do.



btw: DivX doesn't have to look bad. I got a 1gb DivX of an hour show (hour after commercials were removed), and up-converted it to a full DVD.
Picture quality was very nice!
NOT gigo ;)
 

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Thanks Anole... you are always so helpful. Sorry I guess I read you backwards (mpeg->DivX) but good info nonethess. I don't feel so bad that my videos (2.5 hour CFL games - 735 meg files) keep turning out so blotchy!!

By the way... also should mention for those reading that some of the newer DVD's have to DivX codec built right in to them. I picked up a low-end one from Future Shop just last week for 60 bucks and plays DivX stuff from the net no prob.
 

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Sounds like you're putting these 2.5 hour games (no doubt 2.5 gigabytes to start with?) on CDs.
Here's a hint: break lose and buy a DVD burner for your computer!

For around $50 (I'm a hard shopper) you should get a NEC 3520 (I think the latest is 3540).
Burn the 2.5gb on a DVD pretty much as it comes off the PVR, and watch in original quality.
Probably even cut out a processing step and the time to re-encode!

Think of it this way: you deserve it! ;)
Plus, as an added bonus, you can give those DVDs to your friends who can watch it on their standard DVD players.
Or... take your nice DVD to a friend/relative's house, and watch it on THEIR big screen TV ! :)
 

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do the math

I just did the math.

Your file is 2X the size usually made for an hour (actually 42 minute) TV episode.
However, your 2.5 hour source file is 3.5X as big.
So, you are squeezing the game way beyond the norm.

You'd have to make...uhhh... where's that calculator?....
... I get 1.25 gigabytes output file size for your unedited game
to have a quality similar to the TV shows distributed on the internet.

The 2.5gb rip is already way lower than direct view or a normal DVD, but it's still quite good.

So , try a Divx about twice as big as you currently have, and then let's compare quality! ;)
 

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Sgt_Strider said:
I should have been specific by saying the Bell 6120 or the newer Bell 9220. I'm only interested in transfering HD content over to my computer.
You can also use a PCI DVB-S card listed in this thread.
As long as the card has a common interface slot which you can insert your subscribed Nagravision card into it.
Edit: The 6100 and 9200 models do not have a card so you will need to use a card from a model which has one.
 

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Discussion Starter #36
To all the contributors, great stuff and thanks for all the good info!
 

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Anole said:
So , try a Divx about twice as big as you currently have, and then let's compare quality! ;)
OK will do thanks. When I use Dr. DivX to encode sometimes it tends to mess up the source file length (underestimates the file length waaaaay too much). I think that possibly may have something to do with it 'overencoding'. It still encodes the entire file no prob... but for a 2.5 hour game it works out to about 735 megs. I'm gonna mess around with it more when I have some time and see if I can get it all working properly! Thanks again.
 

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Hi everyone,
My first post .. hope I'm doing this right.

I have a 5800 and want to transfer recorded programs to DVD. Just bought a Liteon 5005 ($150 at Costco).

Questions :
What's the best way to hook-up the DVD burner since the 5800 has only 1 S-Video out and I use it to connect to my Sony HDTV ready TV ?

Can it even be done ? If not I'll just return the Liteon burner.

TIA

Marc A.
 

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Myself, I connect one of the sets of composite outs to my DVD recorder. The other option would be to get an S-video splitter. A quick search of eBay showed a bunch of them.
 

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MrGrinch said:
Anole... perhaps getting a hair off topic but can I ask you (and other users) what you use to convert your mpeg files to DivX. I've tried a couple like Dr. DivX but they come out looking so bad. Is this normal?
Perhaps a bit off-topic for PVR rip thread, but just in the interest of following-up and sharing what I've learned I thought I'd update this thread since I've resolved the DivX encoding problems.

Turns out that Dr. DivX needs to be brought up on malpractice charges becuase it just wasn't working properly. For some reason it consistently underestimated the file length / size and when it assigned a compression bitrate it was thinking the file was much smaller than it really was... so it was actually overcompressing the files waaaay too much. And of course it doing so they looked bad! Did a Google search and others are having the same problem. Hmmm... would have expected better from the folks at divx.com

Anyways after some poking around and trying encoders I've found another app online called AutoGK - Auto Gordian Knot which works flawlessly... and best of all it's completely freeware. You can specify either the % compression you want or a specific filesize and it will create the .avi according to your specs. Crunched down a complete 3-hour CFL game to a 1 gig file and looks great.
 
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